Musik Akademie Basel
Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz - Hochschule für Musik


Business Lecture & Workshop

Chang Liu (China)

23. June 2017 | D03 Seminar | 11:00-12:00 & 13:00-14:30

Chang Lii, 1983 born in the northeast part of China, lived several years in Beijing and actually works at the American studies department of the University of Göttingen, Germany. He has already presented his research in China and Europe (University of Oxford, the Free University of Berlin, Leiden University, the University of Copenhagen etc.).

11:00 – 12.00 Lecture: Recounting The Transnational Adventure of Garbages from Western Music Industry

13:00 – 14:30 Workshop: Piracy, Censorship, and Artistic Freedom: Challenges and Opportunities in China's Music Market

Recounting The Transnational Adventure of Garbages from Western Music Industry: Before the rise of digital music, when a record label released a new album as a cassette or CD, it had to estimate the potential market possibillities and decide on how many copies to duplicate. Often the number it estimated exceeds the actual market demand, thus the unsalable copies became dead stock. It was costly to keep them in storage, therefore, the music industry treated them as waste to be scrapped and recycled. In the 1990s and 2000s a huge amount of this type of musical waste from Western societies were exported to China. As plastic material, they were supposed to be recycled, however, these musical waste leaked into China's urban areas and widely circulated in China's music market. By analyzing empirical evidences such as structured and semi-structured interviews with professionals from the music industry, and texts such as essays and fictions written by music critics and writers from China, this lecture aims at answering the following questions: 1, how did devalued musical waste from Western societies travel to China and became valuable commodities again in China's music market? 2, what are the cultural, social, and political implications of the transnational flow of musical waste? 3, how does this phenomenon resonate with the globalization of environmental justice movement?

Piracy, Censorship, and Artistic Freedom - Challenges and Opportunities in China's Music Market: Following China's implementation of the reform and opening up policies in the late 1970s, popular music from Western countries was introduced to China through various means. For instance, in 1985, Wham! took their chance to tour China, which not only made them the first Western popular music group to perform in People's Republic of China but also marks China's official approval of Western popular music. Three decades later, China's music market is no longer new to Western societies, however, it is still relatively less known to the majority of western artists. This workshop is specifically designed for those who are interested in understanding China's music industry and exploring their potentials over there. We will begin by clarifying common misconceptions of issues related to piracy, censorship, and artistic freedom in China. We will then move on to discuss practical matters such as how to release and promote your music in China, how to organize tours in China, what are the funding opportunities, and other aspects that might be relevant to your particular concerns.

My name is Chang Liu, I was born on June 21, 1983. I am a visiting research fellow at the American studies department of the University of Göttingen, Germany. My current research explores how does western music industry deal with its garbage i.e. unsalable cassettes and CDs in the context globalization, and its cultural and environmental implications. I was invited to present my research at various occasions in China and Europe, such as the Delegation of European Union in China, the University of Oxford, the Free University of Berlin, Leiden University, the University of Copenhagen, etc. Originally, I come from the northeast part of China and did my bachelor studies there. I then moved to Beijing and pursued a career in the music industry and was the musical affairs officer of the French embassy in China. After years of working and living in Beijing, I moved to Germany to continue my studies and started my research in the academia. Outside of the academia, I am still actively involved in various fields of the music industry.


23.11.2020 – 29.11.2020

Artist in Residence

Artist in Residence

Kurt Rosenwinkel

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